Life's Music In An Italian Village
zip up and down musical heights.
Vendors from their pushcarts,
hawk pistachio-filled delights.
Young women in flirty dress,
wear heels that tap staccato beats
Men notice them from viewpoints,
they have from in their bistro seats.
Tomato and basil tempts us,
to come and visit a busy fella.
Spinning dough high in mid-air
to the pace of a tarantella.
Bells toll within churches of stone,
scattering pidgeons everywhere,
Bakers make biscotti and pannetone,
the yeasty fragrance fills the square.
Red geraniums in window boxes,
release their pungent perfume.
Shop owners now less busy,
clean their doorways with a broom.
Fountains gurgle pleasantly,
in the cooling afternoon,
Men arriving home from work,
romance their wives and croon.
In the evening from a balcony,
hidden in the nighttime shade,
Two lovers embrace and dance
to moonlight's Italian Serenade.
I am part Italian, from Palermo, a seaside village in the region of Sicily.
Arabs mixed with Italians and the food of that region is spicy and rich.
I guess that's why I love octopus and squid so much! Whenever we ate
pasta, the large, pungent block of Loccatelli cheese would be on the table.
How I loved those family pasta dinners. When I was in my 20's, I was
introduced to an Italian woman named Josephine. She sang
in the choir in a soprano voice. Her kitchen and her home was open to
any visitor. Her thick Italian accent and unpretentious generousity made her
instantly loved. Josephine told of how she was orphaned, and came to
live with a stern aunt. As a child, she often went hungry. At one point, she
looked for fava beans in the hay that the donkeys had overlooked. She knew
hardship and it taught her grace and made her beautiful. She worked as a
seamstress until retiring. Her hands never seemed to stop moving.
Chatting away as she made gnocchi carbonara or sardines and penne,
she gave me a glimpse of what angels looked like. She doted on her family
and her grandchildren were always with her, as were everyone else's kids!
She had a heart for children much like the Jesus she adores. I never heard
an unkind word from her about anyone.Many women and children benefitted
from her ministry of love and hospitality.Thank you Nona Jo, for your time,
love, and your heavenly food,but most of all for your prayers. I am with
you in spirit always.